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POGO Welcomes National Security Analyst Ethan RosenkranzTweet
September 16, 2013
The Project On Government Oversight is pleased to welcome a new member to our team: Ethan Rosenkranz, a well-traveled national security and defense expert. He’ll be working as POGO’s national security policy analyst. In that role, he will help develop national security and defense-related policy recommendations, disseminate and publicize investigatory findings, advocate reforms to the media, public, and Congress, and contribute to POGO investigations.
Before joining POGO, Rosenkranz spent four years on Capitol Hill, during which he helped draft two alternative budget resolutions, both of which incorporated significant savings in Pentagon spending, and handled Science and Technology Committee work. Ethan also worked on a diverse portfolio of congressional issues and has extensive experience drafting floor amendments on specific weapons systems. Most recently, Ethan worked for the Project on Defense Alternatives as the executive editor of the Reset Defense Bulletin, a weekly newsletter covering the defense budget and Congress.
Ethan was born in Madrid, Spain to expat American parents and grew up in Europe and Asia. He received a B.A., magna cum laude, from George Washington University’s Elliot School of International Affairs with a concentration in Conflict and Security.
POGO: Why do you think government oversight is important and what is the one thing you're most looking forward to doing at POGO?
Ethan: Government oversight is important for effective stewardship of taxpayer funds. Congress, whose role it is to exercise oversight of the executive branch has, regrettably, ceded or delegated much of its authority over federal purse strings to the executive branch. It is up to organizations like POGO to fill the gap and help facilitate accountability in the federal government. At POGO, I'm looking forward to advocating sensible reforms to our defense budget that will ultimately make our country safer and help reduce spending on wasteful programs.
POGO: During your time working on the Hill and on national security issues, what are some of the most offensive examples of government waste you've come across?
Ethan: I worked on the Hill during the height of the Iraq and Afghan wars, during which the United States was spending significant sums of funding redeveloping and reconstructing these war-torn countries. Unfortunately, inspectors general tasked with overseeing these projects found tens of billions of dollars in waste, fraud, and abuse. Egregious examples include military facilities that the United States is constructing or has constructed that will never be occupied by either American service members or local security forces.
POGO: What's your favorite part about living in DC and what do you miss most about living abroad?
Ethan: Having been born and grown up overseas, my favorite part about living in DC is the international nature of the city and the multicultural makeup of its residents. Access to art and museum exhibits, concerts, and lecture series in the United States are unparalleled.
POGO: As someone who has followed POGO closely, which of our past investigations stand out and why?
Ethan: POGO's investigations into diplomatic security stand out for me because it directly impacts our ability to conduct diplomacy abroad and wage effective foreign policy. America's diplomats are the first face of the country and represent our interests abroad. Lapses in diplomatic security may prevent our best and brightest from joining the foreign service and certainly impact America's ability to interact in a positive manner with local populations.
POGO: What do you do in your free time, when you're not advocating for public policy reforms?
Ethan: In my free time, I like to travel. I was fortunate to visit Tunisia soon before it engaged in a revolution that overthrew that country's dictator. It was incredibly interesting to speak to locals there who were increasingly fed up with their government and the lack of democratic options available to them. Soon thereafter, they realized their democratic ambitions with the toppling of Ben Ali. A couple of years ago, I visited central Indonesia soon after a large volcano had been erupting. The countryside was devoid of most people and quite eerie. I like watching world history unfold. I was in Indonesia in 2004 when the massive tsunami struck and in Israel in 2003 during the height of the Second Intifada.
Image by Joe Newman.
Avery Kleinman is the Beth Daley Impact Fellow for the Project On Government Oversight.
Topics: National Security
Authors: Avery Kleinman
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